CNN meteorologist Haley Brink, referring to the postponed opening, said, “There could be weather like Saturday and Sunday like Wednesday.” “We can look forward to a game-time decision again this weekend.”
The next launch opportunity is ET on Saturday at 3:22 pm ET, Sunday ET with a 3pm backup window.
Scrubbing the launch is not uncommon due to the weather.
“Scrubs are part of managing spaceflight safely and successfully. _ _ We also got caught during my last mission to space_station weather!” Bob Benken, one of the two astronauts aboard the SpaceX crew dragon capsule, tweeted.
Experts warn about lightning
Lightning is the biggest concern for the planned launch this weekend.
Pat Hillland, a research associate at the Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies (CIMMS) at the University of Oklahoma with the support of the NOAA National Severe Storm Laboratory (NSSL), has spent several years researching the subject. During his undergraduate and graduate research, which was funded as part of the NASA EPSCOR grant, he focused on investigating the electric field mill (EFM) network at the Kennedy Space Center to determine the rate of fake-alarms and to assist the NASA Power Launch Committee. Critical.
“The motivation for the study was somewhat because the study found that one or more of the first or first few cloud-to-ground (CG) storms resulted in more than half of the lightning strikes, and the return resulted in a significant number of casualties in outdoor activities, shortly before the power outage.” Highland said. “We were looking for possible clues as to what was happening with the electric field below. Hopefully the lightning-warning-decision situation in lightning provided guidance as happened with their launches at the Kennedy Space Center.”
They tried to see patterns in the atmosphere during their rocket-triggered lightning test.
“This is another reason, even in the absence of lightning directly around the site, that even launches can be scrubbed occasionally because rockets can artificially thunder,” Highland said.
For example, lightning in an area will cancel a flight, such as a cloud that has enough electric field to produce rocket-triggered lightning with a huge rocket strong enough to fly through an atmospheric electric field when a huge spark of electricity occurs.
The electric field required for rocket-triggered lightning is much less than that of natural lightning.
Other hazards could also scrub the launch
Forecasters need to monitor the wind and weather downrange of the launchpad.
The mission will be scrubbed if 30 miles or more of continuous wind continues to blow 162 feet above the launch pad.
It’s not just the weather on the launch pad site. The Weather Squadron has to monitor the weather below because the Crew Dragon capsule needs to have a safe splashdown position if it encounters any problems.
The entire team of weather notifications is ahead of the 45th Space Wing and SpaceX to determine if the weather will scrub the launch, as is Wednesday, the exact decision of the lift off can be made.
Judson Jones of CNN contributed to this report.